Mission : The mission of the NIH PGRN is to advance our knowledge of the genetic basis for variable drug responses.
Background : The NIH Pharmacogenetics Research Network (PGRN) was formed in 2000 to enable a network of multi-disciplinary research groups to conduct studies addressing research questions in pharmacogenetics and pharmacogenomics (the genetic basis for variation in drug responses) and to populate a knowledge base (PharmGKB). The latter will be used as a research tool to enable future pharmacogenetics studies and should serve as the premier knowledge base in the field. In 2005, the PGRN was renewed for a second 5-year period. The PGRN has been led by NIGMS, with important participation from other NIH Institutes and Offices, including NHLBI, NIDA, NCI, NIEHS, NHGRI, NIMH, NLM and ORWH. Ultimately, the long term goal is to translate this knowledge and identify safe and effective drug therapies designed for individual patients.
The PGRN comprises 12 independently-funded interactive research groups, including the knowledge base group. Each research group has a focus in an identified area of pharmacogenetics (see /Research/FeaturedPrograms/PGRN/Network/pages/
). The PGRN is accomplishing its mission by conducting studies of variation in human genes relevant to pharmacokinetics (drug disposition) and pharmacodynamics (drug action), and the relationship of such variation to drug response phenotypes, with deposition of the resulting data into the knowledge base, PharmGKB ( www.pharmgkb.org/
). PharmGKB contains both raw and curated information. It presents data and information accumulated in the field and contributed by researchers both within and beyond the network.
Goals : All PGRN groups are expected to advance pharmacogenetics research knowledge in their respective areas of focus. The work of the groups ranges from basic research into identifying variation in genes (and functional consequences) relevant to pharmacogenetics, to clinical research aimed at understanding the genetic basis for variable drug responses, both therapeutic and adverse. The aims of the PGRN include:
- Performing the highest quality research studies to understand and explain the relationships between drug response phenotypes and genetic variation, using state-of-the-art experimental approaches and technologies.
- Building a premier web-based knowledge base (PharmGKB) that rapidly disseminates accurate and detailed definitions of genotypes and phenotypes in pharmacogenetics, along with tools and resources.
- Stimulating collaborations within and beyond the PGRN through having a critical mass of researchers in cross-cutting areas.
- Interacting with and influencing the wider community of scientists in academia, industry, and government regulatory agencies, to advance the field.
Accepted October 2005 by the PGRN and NIH